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lead to identifi cation of the most appropriate policy instruments. New strong scientifi c collaborations, especially as certain fi elds in the indicators and new metrics need to support implementation and social science and humanities community are still quite fragmented. policies. Efforts should be devoted to launch indicators that are more Funding social platforms also seems to be a good approach for in tune with innovation in a knowledge-based society. These must involving stakeholders in defi ning research agendas. take into account that a knowledge-based system tends to operate in terms of uncertainties and expectations, differently than that of a Specifi c research funding instruments can be developed to opti- classical political economy. The dynamics are more footloose and mise the benefi ts from the fact that ‘societal challenges’ research less embedded, but models of anticipatory systems, e.g. simulations, often happens at the intersection of policy-oriented expertise can help to expose the various dynamics of expectations. and academic knowledge anchored in university departments. If the distinct social roles and internal dynamics of these communi- While innovation in one sense is ultimately boundary-less, it typi- ties are recognised – and mutually respected – it is possible to cally works so that some aspects of an innovation can be directly optimise procedures, deliverables, and funding regimes for the implemented in real life and are directly useful to society. Some- purpose of getting the two (here ideal-typically categorised) com- times researchers fail to acknowledge the feasibility aspect of their munities to challenge each other in helpful ways. innovation. On the other hand stakeholders are often not interested in scientifi c results, per se; therefore, a crucial task in research and In selecting problems and research areas it is important to keep in innovation policy is to convince stakeholders, at various levels and mind that innovative research and activity grow from the bottom in various sectors, about the opportunities of knowledge-intensive up. High-level research should be promoted in all areas – including governance. A key factor shaping relations between practice and the social sciences and humanities – without red tape that requires research is what culture and attitude around science and know- milestones and deliverables in advance. The outcome of frontier ledge, the government, and political elites convey. research is inherently unknown. It should not be deduced from the existence of separate excellence programs like ERC, that research Research, however, should go beyond government and industry, targeted at the six societal challenges will not be frontier research. cultivating links to social movements, NGOs, and representatives of As argued by ‘mode 2’ and ‘triple helix’ literatures, old conceptions civic society in order to fi nd the most viable solutions. Strong norms of basic and applied research have been overtaken by a new situa- raise doubts about research critical to the establishment, which is tion, where often frontier research happens ‘in the context of appli- seen as critical and political, while useful expert knowledge pro- cation’. Identifying with precision all of the needs and potentials of duced for the establishment is viewed as normal and non-political. European research in advance is impossible, but articulating what they might be is an ambition worth pursuing. Thus, fi nding a way The ambition in Horizon 2020 to support and promote excellent to give scholars the opportunity to communicate research priorities research with a social impact with contributions from various disci- with reference to an ever-changing world is important. One option plines should be refl ected in the evaluation criteria and processes. is to devote part of the funds for open calls for proposals within the framework of collaborative research. Given the existence of ‘fully On a practical level Horizon 2020 can contribute to the develop- open’ calls under ERC, closing the gap might be achieved through ment of a new way of cooperating, for example by supporting col- scaling, where some calls within each grand societal challenge are laborative research, particularly in fi elds where sharing equipment more specifi ed, and others are at a higher level of generalisation, due to fi nancial constraints is not necessary (as it is in parts of the allowing for not-yet-defi ned agendas to emerge and be pursued. natural and medical sciences, where consequently cooperation is This would be an innovation compared to previous FPs, where the more easily fostered). Doing comparative research and confron- procedure has been to subdivide and subdivide to a certain, but ting different methodologies, references, and repertories with each relatively consistent degree of specifi cation. Premature lock-in can other, are necessary, but the amount of national funding available be avoided by supplementing this with more general, open and for this kind of research is often limited. In other words, relying competitive calls covering a large part of the theme. on national funding alone would most likely restrict collaborative research to the domain of wealthier European countries and institu- tions. Maintaining a high level of excellence and staying focused on targeted scientifi c objectives means that the size of research net- works must be adapted to suit the objectives. In practice, small and medium-sized projects guarantee excellence and quality results. Encouraging the early setup of networks is productive to developing SOCIETIES 81


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